By Amanda Howell With barely a quorum present Wednesday morning, the Brady City Council voted to approve the second reading of an ordinance to levy taxes for the use and support of the City of Brady for the 2003 year. This year’s rate, lowered from last year’s tax rate to meet the newly appraised property values, is 0.24892 per $100 valuation. Because homes in Brady were appraised at a higher rate this year, the city is able to generate the necessary funds with a lower tax rate. As the next item up for discussion, the council awarded the city’s bank depository bid to Brady National Bank. Approving the longtime financial institution at the recommendation of City Manager Merle Taylor and City Finance Officer Lisa Remini, the council chose to go with BNB’s variable rate of 0.93 percent on checking account balances over the next two years. In selecting a bank depository, Mrs. Remini noted that the bank is required to offer certain securities. As a municipality, the city will be utilizing their services for loan rates, certificates of deposits and additional services (deposit box, wire transfers, etc.). “They (BNB) were slightly better in all points than Commercial National Bank,” said Mrs. Remini. “While they were very similar, Brady National Bank still proved to be better for us as a municipality.” As long-time business associates, Mrs. Remini went on to add, “We’ve had a good working relationship with Brady National Bank and have been very pleased with their services.” Another item approved in Wednesday’s meeting, the council voted unanimously to enter into an interlocal purchase agreement with Region IV Education Service Center. At no cost to the city, this process will allow the city’s purchasing agent to negotiate the purchase of supplies through ESC. Councilman Billy Patterson stated that the city should be in line to save money on supplies, especially “when you co-op with other companies,” he said. Following the executive session and after bringing the meeting back into order, Mayor Clarence Friar explained that this time of year is typically when the city manager and city secretary receive their annual evaluations. After joking that the city manager and city secretary’s “jobs are still intact,” Friar continued by commending both Taylor and Christi McAnally for their efforts this past year. “These two earn their pay, folks,” he said. “It’s a lot harder job than I once thought.” In Taylor’s bi-monthly report to the council, he mentioned that the city is still working on the airport and water treatment plant projects. He commented that the pipeline installation will begin in town near the water wells and work toward the lake (so as to not interfere with the opening of hunting season and game activity around lake properties). As Taylor’s final comment, he commended The Best for the Heart of Texas for their efforts to clean up the Brownwood Highway just north of town as well as South China and 6th Streets. Taylor mentioned that the group, led by Sheila Hemphill, did an excellent job separating waste into specific categories. He said that it was a very successful event and he expressed his appreciation for the improvement it made on the community.